How To Make Cold Brew Coffee

How To Make Cold Brew Coffee At Home

Someone pouring cold brew coffee into a glass full of ice.

For many people, coffee is an essential part of a morning routine. Whether you prefer a cold brew coffee when the day indicates it is going to be a scorcher, or you are just discovering how to make cold brew coffee at home, we have you covered. If you love a cold brew(not iced coffee) then perfecting your brewing method, which we all know many coffee shops charge an arm and leg for, is a must.

What Is Cold Brew Coffee

If you immediately jumped to the thought process that making a cold brew coffee at home is simply making regular coffee and leaving it in the fridge to cool down, or just adding iced cubes you would be half correct.

But creating a smoother, great-tasting cold brew coffee is more than trying to make cold a fresh pot of brew, and once you understand the subtle differences it may well just become your new favorite summer chilled beverage.

A cold brew coffee is a version of an iced coffee but which is made using coarsely ground coffee beans, and essentially left to steep. Ideally, you want to make cold brew coffee early in the day so it has plenty of time to chill in the fridge, preferably overnight, and the next day it is strained.

There are many advantages to learning the simple task of making cold brew coffee when compared to drip coffee which, while it is easy to prepare, is not as satisfyingly decadent. Once you have made your cold brew coffee it can last for up to a week in the refrigerator, and if you add coffee ice cubes to your glass it makes those hot summer days so much more refreshing.

Let's see why knowing how to make cold brew coffee(without the need for a fancy French Press) is the cold brew you need for the upcoming vacation season, and it rules out the need to run down to your local coffee shop every morning.

  • You don't need a page full of fancy barista equipment or expensive coffee machines making this a cost-effective caffeine drink that is easy on the wallet.
  • When you make a big batch and store it in a glass container or your favorite mason jar collection, you can save precious time in the morning and be set for the week. You will soon see that making a cold brew at home is effortless.

Often we think that to get a caffeine kick we need to sip a hot coffee, but who wants to add heat with a hot coffee when summer is in full swing? When you know how to make cold brew coffee you can still enjoy your favorite coffee and caffeine flavor, now only as a cold brew concentrate. Win-win.

Steps for Making Cold Brew Coffee

Unlike that fancy, magazine-worthy looking iced coffee (that we dare not order in coffee shops for fear of breaking the bank), when you know how to make cold brew coffee at home you see that the basics of tools are all you need to pull together a decadent cold brew coffee.

If you do want to add to your coffee arsenal then investing in a quality coffee grinder, for freshly ground coffee, can save you a lot of time. Because you will be grinding a lot of coffee beans as your newfound love for cold brew coffee becomes a must-have morning go-to, grinding the coffee grounds to the right size can become tedious. This is why a fellow ode grinder coffee enthusiast highly recommends this be your first purchase on your cold brew coffee adventure. Once your armed with a good grinder we suggest brewing your batch of cold brew using a Toddy Cold Brew System. Not a must piece of equipment but definitely worth the buy! Realistically any jar or French press can do the trick too.

And yes, you can enjoy a decaf cold brew too simply by grinding decaf coffee beans in place of your usual ground coffee blend. Having this option allows you to have one more coffee than perhaps you usually would, or you need a refreshing pick-me-up without wanting to load up on caffeine.

Cold Brew Coffee Equipment You Need:

What You Need To Make The Perfect Cold Brew Coffee

Let's jump in and get you started on making your own cold brew at home ready to be served cold when family and friends arrive thirsty.

How Make Cold Brew Coffee

how to make cold brew coffee step 1 coarse ground coffee
Step 1

Coarsely Grind the Coffee Beans

The first things to know in the 'how to make cold brew coffee' technique is to always use freshly ground whole beans, and steer clear of pre-ground store-bought coffee grounds that are often too fine for a cold brew.

The finer coarse grind beans are better suited to espresso and coffee machines or French press recipes (with their bespoke fine mesh strainer additions) where the compact coffee grounds are what bring the beverage together. A fellow ode grinder user raves about the grind size control you have when you grind your own and you can create the perfect batch of coarsely ground coffee for the perfect cold brew coffee.

The finer coarse grind beans are better suited to espresso and coffee machines or French press recipes (with their bespoke fine mesh strainer additions) where the compact coffee grounds are what bring the beverage together. A fellow ode grinder user raves about the grind size control you have when you grind your own and you can create the perfect batch of coarsely ground coffee for the perfect cold brew coffee.

Using freshly ground coffee grounds is also the better option to maximize flavor, irrespective of the brewing process. And who doesn't love a big batch of cold brew coffee packed with flavor and aromatics

how to make cold brew coffee step 2 add grinds into vessel
Step 2

Fill Cold Brew Toddy Container

Place the stopper in the outer bottom of the brewing container. Then, moisten the disc-shaped felt filter and position it in the inner bottom of the container. After that, uncover the top of your paper filter bag and put it into the brewing container.

Add 12 ounces (340 g) of coarse coffee grounds into the brewing container. Optional - You can use the filter provide if you desire less sediment.

Don't have a cold brew maker? No problem! A new trend and cold brew method on the market is making coffee using a cold brew bag, and yes, it is exactly as it sounds. A bag filled with ground coffee, nothing to do with a fine mesh strainer.

Using this cold brewing method simply fill a jar with water and pull the ends tight to seal the coffee bag.

If the bag is loose in any way the coffee will seep out into your coffee concentrate and you end up with a big batch of slushy brown liquid that no one wants to drink.

how to make cold brew coffee step 3 add cold water into vessel
Step 3

Combine With Cold Water

Add 8 cups (64 fl. oz./1.9 L) of water. Use a spoon or spatula to gently stir the coffee grounds to guarantee uniform saturation. Finally, twist the top of the bag tightly to seal it.

If using a bag brewing method, you want to grab your mason jar (a large mason jar if you have it) or hario cold brew bottle and place the bag inside. Fill the mason jar with cold filtered water or room temperature water (do not use hot water), ensuring the bag is fully immersed and all the coffee is in the water.

To prevent bitter flavors and your coffee from oxidizing you want to seal your mason jar as tightly as possible so no air can get in, and keep it out of sunlight. This will be easy if you are leaving your coffee overnight and making a large quantity as the weather warms by simply popping it in the fridge to let the coffee steep.

how to make cold brew coffee step 4 stir and let coffee vessel sit overnight on a countertop
Step 4


Steep your coffee grounds at room temperature 8 to 24 hours to create a smooth, rich flavor.

There is no sweeter flavor than a cold brew that has been steeping overnight, and no more than 24 hours to prevent it from becoming over-extracted, than sipping a fresh, chilled coffee with the simplest of clean-ups ever.

Coffee brewed cold has a longer extraction process which is why wherever possible you want to give it a minimum of 8 hours to steep. Drinking cold brew in the morning is the perfect way to get the ball rolling for a busy day ahead.

how to make cold brew coffee step 5 filter and drain coffee vessel into container
Step 5

Fill it Up and Stir

Take out the stopper and allow the coffee concentrate to pour into the glass decanter. Discard the paper filter (if used) and coffee grounds. The coffee concentrate can be kept fresh for a maximum of 2 weeks by refrigerating it.

If using a mason jar your brewing stops here all you need to do is discard the bag inside large pop few coffee ice cubes in for added chill and enjoy.

A glass of cold brew coffee on a counter
Step 6

Serve Cold Brewed Coffee

Begin with a ratio of 1 portion of coffee concentrate to 2 portions of water or milk. Adjust to your liking, creating a coffee that is either strong or mild. For a creamy, smooth iced coffee, pour the coffee concentrate and water or milk over ice.

Some people have a personal taste for a sweeter flavor brew, adding a teaspoon or two of sugar can help it taste just as good as the hot cup of coffee you savor in the winter months.

A Final Tip

Gone are the days when iced coffee was the only option for a fancier coffee beverage, we have options, we have innovative brewing methods, and coffee beans that come infused with all sorts of flavors tells us coffee is not going anywhere in the foreseeable future.

It has been an integral part of our past and history and is paving the way for our future too. The time to make cold brew is now. So sit back, put your feet up, and sip your now-perfected cold brew coffee. We love cold brew and all the possibilities it offers.

The Best Coffee Beans For Cold Brew Coffee

A glass of cold brew coffee on a counter top

Coffee Questions:

Have more questions about cold brew coffee?

It is easy to assume we are talking about iced coffee, but the latter involves filter coffee brewed hot with water, and poured over the ice. Using filtered water makes no significant change to the taste despite many claims that it does.

They are equally the same on a health scale, and whether you use a coffee filter for either drink or add cinnamon sticks for an improved flavor profile the health benefits are still on par.

You could contact your local roaster and see if rather than a darker roast you could sample a lighter, even decaf roast, and play with flavors and concentrations. And be sure to ask them to coarsely grind your beans.

A short answer, yes.

Many people think if you use a large measuring cup rather than a mason jar you get a better result, you don't, strained coffee tastes great in any vessel when made right. The most important component in this process is the size of the coffee grounds, if they are too fine you end up with sludge at the bottom of your cup even if you stir gently you will taste and feel the grit. Not fun

All About Cold Brewing

Elevate your coffee game and enjoy the smooth, rich flavors of cold brew all year round.